Thursday, June 30, 2011

Successful Braking

I'm investigating taking a motorcycle safety class. I can't decide if I should take another advanced course to get more practice or something different. I'm leaning towards the Civilian Top Gun course. I think it will help me feel more comfortable on the bike. Not that I'm uncomfortable, but I think it will push me out of my comfort zone a little and teach me some things I think I already know.

On the way home today I got to use some of my previous training skills. Leaving Boulder on highway 93, the road heading south out of town is two lanes heading up the hill but merges into one lane just before the intersection with highway 170. There is a stop light here as well. Traffic often becomes backed up because no one in this state knows how to merge. Coming over the hill, with all of the traffic, it's difficult to see ahead. Traffic slowed to a stop very rapidly at this point. It was not quite an emergency stop but it was a quick stop. Not only did I apply enough gradual braking to stop safely, I even maneuvered myself into a position with an escape route. I was able to anticipate the car behind me as I shifted to the right part of the lane near the open shoulder. Everyone managed their own vehicles ok so there wasn't anything really to write about beyond that.

Since I'd been thinking about motorcycle classes and how often I think I should invest in them, this lesson put into practice sort of sealed the deal. Now I just need to find the time and the funds. :-)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Happy Summer!

Ahhh, the first day of summer! It's been beautiful here in and around Boulder. I had only one meeting today and it was around the lunch hour so I didn't make it out for my extended lunch ride up the canyon. Oh well. It was a very busy day at work so the day went by quickly. After work I rode to Chautauqua for a trail run with my good friend. I've said it before and I'll say it again. I really like my side cases. I can fit most of my gear in them when I head out for a run. I lock my helmet and jacket to the bike and away I go! The only difficulty is finding a flat spot to park the bike where it either won't tip over or where I can get it off the side stand when I'm ready to go.

There are quite a few new bikes in the lot at work. And almost all of us have side cases. It makes parking interesting. So far no problems though. The day I was the last moto in the lot was a little tricky but I managed ok. There's even a new yellow GS with caribou cases at work now. I don't know who it belongs to but it looks like it's seen some action. If I had yellow cases, we'd be mirror images of each other.

As I was gearing up to leave today, I had a long conversation with a guy on a bicycle who was registered for the moto safety class this weekend. He asked me all sorts of questions about what it's like to commute. He seemed like a bright kid who would enjoy a motorcycle. I wished him good luck and told him to have fun and bring lots of water because it was going to be a hot weekend.

Not too much more going on these days other than the commute. Life is good. Motorcycling and running does a body and soul good. :-)

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Honda Magna....some day, my next moto....

I've been on travel, both for work and for vacation, for about 3 weeks. So, I haven't had much time in the saddle of my GS lately. Even before I left for my work trip to Fairbanks, I hadn't been riding very much. I think it was the weather or too busy or something. I don't really remember. And it isn't important now. Now, the weather has warmed, the days are longer, and the campus is on summer hours, which means less traffic during the morning and evening rush hours.

I traveled to the University of Alaska in Fairbanks. (Apologies to Richard for not getting in touch.) I worked a lot and didn't get to do much vacationing. I did manage to run a 5K while there. No motorcycling though. :-)

My vacation to Atlanta did allow for some motorcycling. :-)  I visited my brother who recently purchased a 1994 Honda Magna. Oh yeah! He rode his CBR and I rode the Magna. I've always wanted a Magna but have only ever sat on one once at the dealership. So, my experience with them has been non-existent. I'm not even sure why I've fallen in love with this old moto. Well... I am now. :-)

Here is my big brother checking the tire pressure before our ride. The yellow Magna is so sweet! His CBR is in the back.
Look at how happy I am!

 I have so much motorcycle gear, I mailed my boots, jacket, and gloves. I also carried on my helmet and left it behind for future visits.

Ahhh.... it's such a comfortable motorcycle. :-)

We managed one ride the day after I arrived. Then we celebrated my mother's birthday the next day. The day after that we drove to Indianapolis to attend the Indy 500. Oh, did I mention that?  Here we are outside the gate ready with our tickets. And here's a view of me from our seats.

On the way to our seats we spotted this beauty.

It was our fourth time going. Awesome! Next time we will have to ride there now that my brother has the Magna. He can ride the Magna and I'll rent something.

I happened to be back in Atlanta in time for Bike Night downtown. My brother and some of his buddies occasionally hang out at this event. It was pretty fun to be a part of that scene. We don't do much of that at home. I'm not sure why. It's mostly sport bikes on display there. I rode the Magna again. :-)

By the time I got home, I'd been away from my GS for a long time. The day after I got home, my hubby and I rode 170 miles visiting his sister and brother-in-law. She just bought a 2011 G650GS. Woot! Unfortunately, they are about to move farther away from us. Boo! Here's her shiny new red GS.

I was quite exhausted from all the traveling but have been commuting fearlessly since I've been back (3 days). I'm getting used to the GS again after being on the Magna. My little GS did feel quite under powered and slow at first but... I still love it. Ok, gotta go search Craig's List for my own yellow Magna to add to the fleet. My brother needs a bike to ride when he comes to visit us in Colorado! ;-)